Sat, Jun 18, 2011
Virgin America To Be First With $1.4 Billion Order On A320neo
Virgin America launched CFM International's advanced LEAP engine
with an order on Wednesday to power 30 new Airbus A320neo aircraft.
The airline also announced that CFM's CFM56-5B will power 30
current technology A320s. The 60 airplanes were announced in
January of this year and the engine orders have a combined value of
approximately $1.4 billion U.S. at list price.
Both the LEAP and CFM56-5B engines are products of CFM
International (CFM), a 50/50 joint company between Snecma (Safran
group) and GE. The new airplanes will begin delivery in 2016.
LEAP engines incorporate revolutionary technologies never before
seen in the single-aisle aircraft segment. The new engine combines
advanced aerodynamic design techniques, lighter, more durable
materials, and leading-edge environmental technologies, making it a
major breakthrough in engine technology. The 15 percent better
engine fuel efficiency*, at current fuel prices, translates to as
much as $1.6 million in fuel cost savings alone for customers per
airplane, per year. LEAP technology will also achieve double-digit
improvements in CO2 emissions and noise levels, all while providing
the industry's best reliability and lowest maintenance costs.
"As a young and growing airline, we credit much of our success
to having the right equipment, and choosing LEAP to power our
A320neos is right in line with our long-term strategy," said Virgin
America President and CEO David Cush. "With LEAP, Virgin America is
getting the best of all possible worlds: the industry's most
advanced technology-with all of the benefits that represents -as
well as the consistency and inherent reliability of a CFM product.
We also know that the company's reputation for meeting its
commitments is unrivaled and this latest move will help us continue
to fuel growth and success in the North American market."
"We are thrilled that Virgin America is launching LEAP and look
forwarding to expanding an already great relationship," said
Jean-Paul Ebanga, president and CEO of CFM. "But this is just the
beginning; this engine has a great future."
CFM says The lower fuel burn also reduces CO2 emission by 15
percent, while LEAP's industry-leading combustor technology will
reduce emissions of oxides of nitrogen (NOx), a greenhouse gas, by
50 percent compared to current requirements.
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